Queen Beatrix has cancelled all her engagements for next week. The new ambassadors of the African nations Mozambique and Djibouti will have to reschedule their appointment to offer their credentials, the tenth anniversary celebration of Eurojust will have to make do without a royal visitor, and Prince Willem-Alexander will stand in for his mother at a War Memorial on Monday.
The Dutch queen at present is at the side of her second son Prince Friso, who is in stable but still critical condition in a hospital in the Austrian town of Innsbruck. Last week Friday he was hit by an avalanche while skiing in the Austrian Alps near Lech am Vorarlberg, where the Dutch royal family have been coming since the earlier sixties.
With Prince Friso, 43, was Florian Moosbrugger, 42, a very seasoned skier, as is the Prince, and a close friend of the royal family. He is also the manager of hotel Gasthof Post, which the Dutch royals consider as their home away from home.
Queen Beatrix this year is staying there for the 47th time. Moosbrugger escaped injury by using his avalanche airbag. He was than able to alarm the rescue services and is reported to have started digging in the snow to find his life time friend Friso.
* Prince Constantijn, youngest son of the queen, with Princesses Mabel and Laurentien, Thursday
The queen and members of her family visit Friso daily, in two shifts. With the exception of Thursday the queen comes in the early afternoon, accompanied by Friso's wife Princess Mabel - CEO of The Elders. In the evening Mabel returns, with other members of the royal family or of her own family. Doctors still do not know when a prognosis of Friso can be given. It was expected that would happen before the end of the week, but on Wednesday a statement said it could take longer.
Queen Beatrix will return to The Hague over the weekend it was announced Thusrday. She has some private business to attend to before returning to Austria. Her eldest son Prince Willem-Alexander and his wife Princess Máxima had already planned to stay another week - the heir to the Dutch throne will only make a quick trip home to attend the 70th anniversary of the battle of the Java Sea memorial service.